TechTool Thursday 054 Resus Code Apps

TechTool review Code Apps for iOS – multiple developers

For most of us, full-blown resuscitations are the most exciting and terrifying parts of our job. Someone is always allocated to be the scribe – but are there any apps that can make this job easier?

I’ve been having a look at apps for keeping track of resus situations – specifically which drugs are given when, and general resus progress. I assumed there would be hundreds of these apps out there, but when it came down to it, I could only find a few that fitted the bill.

Here I compare three iOS apps for this purpose:

  1. Full Code Pro by American Heart Association – iTunes – Website
  2. Code CPR by Remarkable Edge – iTunes – Website
  3. Code Runner by The Scientific Mind – iTunes – Website

All are available on iPhone, but Full Code Pro is designed for the iPad too.

Best Features

All three of these apps can:

  • Time the resus
  • Mark when specific drugs are given
  • Note if specific rhythms are present (e.g. PEA, aystole)
  • Produce a report containing a log of all resus events which can be stored or emailed

Code CPR sets itself way above the other with its extra features:

  • Customise your own events to add to each resus
  • Add vital sign measurements (e.g. HR, sats, GCS, temp, BP) into the resus log
  • Easily adjust and store the actual doses of drugs given
  • An adjustable metronome to indicate speed of CPR
  • Countdown timers to allow you to count down during the resus (e.g. as a reminder of the CPR cycles or when the next set of drugs are due)

Code Runner is the most limiting, feature-wise, as you have to enter a rhythm before you start (which may not always be known) and the options for adding and customising resus events are limited.

Winner: Code CPR

Best Design

Code Runner is the most basic – very simple graphics that don’t look like much effort has gone into creating them. There are few nice customised icons but otherwise it’s the bare minimum.

Code Runner

Code CPR has some lovely design features. I particularly like the tracking bar at the bottom, which summarises the resus events so you can keep a quick track of your progress.

Code CPR iPhone

Full Code Pro has the slight edge in the design category. I wouldn’t say the design is stunning but it is clearly laid out and the colour scheme makes it simple to follow.

Full Code Pro

Winner: Full Code Pro Runner

Best to use in a crisis

Let’s face it, we need something that is simple to navigate during a code as we don’t have time to faff about.

  • Code CPR falls down here. All it’s customisable options result in it being a bit tricky to navigate and it’s too easy to get lost in the app.
  • Full Code Pro is pretty straightforward to use, particularly on the iPad, but Code Runner wins this category. It only gives you limited options (this was a disadvantage in the ‘Best features’ category) and suggests when you might want to take the next course of action, in case your brain has completely stopped working.
Winner: Code Runner

Best value

  • Code CPR is $3.79 – not a bad price if it’s going to be used regularly.
  • Code Runner Lite is free – but only lets you run a Code for 4 minutes. This may be a problem for some patients, so you’d have to stretch to $3.79 for the full version.
  • Full Code Pro is FREE and it works well, so this is easily the best value.
Winner: Full Code Pro Runner

Overall verdict

  • Code Runner is completely out of the running – it’s too basic and in practical terms isn’t going to be useful in an actual resus.
  • Full Code Pro and Code CPR are a close call for first place, but taking into account the price, iPad format, and simplicity, I’m going to say that Full Code Pro wins this.

However, if Code CPR can make its user interface a bit cleaner and easier to navigate, it would be well worth the $3.79 as it has great features and some nice design flourishes. An iPad version of Code CPR would solve most of its problems. The colour scheme can be changed, and you can customise the app to adjust the colours, row height, and font-type. I’m not sure all the customisation options are necessary – it would be better for it to look great when you open the app first time round.

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    • andy paton says

      adding a metronome (perhaps with LED flash rather than noise) would be helpful for quality control of hest compressions. Not sure if this is already on the app but I couldn’t find it.

      • says

        It already has. It’s on the navigation pane at left. You can get it if you press the tree horizontal lines button on the top left of the screen.

        As for the led flash, it could be a good idea. I will try it and if it works well I would put on a future version.

        João Colaço

  1. Adam M. Spaulding says

    First downfall: going into a code with an iphone.

    @Joao: yes, please consider a more open access platform, such as Android.

  2. Pelagic says

    @Joao -- lots of good things about the app :)

    A clearer button in the timer screen for adding events such as drugs, ROSC etc would be helpful. Perhaps space on the screen for three buttons to take you to: ‘CPR Events” “Drugs” “Procedures” would be easier than a huge scroll down with everything?

    Less timers would create more room (three is fine for most people?), the option to remove timers and perhaps have a scrolling timeline at the bottom of the screen would be good?

    Fully customisable is great -- timers, drugs etc -- ideal

    HTH -- good app

  3. says

    Thanks for the comments.
    I’m trying to implement some changes to help make the app more accessible.
    The scrolling timeline on the bottom could be fun and a good idea, but probably the best would be to make it optional with a toggle.
    The buttons to change the screen are being “made” and I will streamline the Events interface.

    I really would like to know the number of timers that are used. Can I have some replies with it?